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Long or Strong, Get Gone

We can’t predict when a tsunami is going to happen, but we can be prepared in case it does. For coastal communities like Whiritoa and Kaiaua, there are some key things to think about in advance so you are ready.

Get prepared

Pack a ‘grab bag’ with supplies you’ll need in an emergency

That could include food and water, medicines, a first aid kit, a torch and radio with spare batteries, supplies for babies and young children as well as pets. You may need to take care of yourself for up to seven days before help can arrive. Check out the Civil Defence website for more information.

Make an emergency plan for your household so you all know what to do in an emergency

Use the printable template from the Civil Defence website

Find out where your safe evacuation zone is

You will need to head to the nearest high ground or as far inland as possible. 

Know your neighbours

Would any of your friends and neighbours need help to evacuate their homes?

If it’s long or strong, get gone

If you feel a long or strong earthquake, it’s time to move to the nearest high ground or as far inland as possible. Don’t wait for an official tsunami warning.

  • A strong earthquake may be violent, making it hard to stand up.
  • A long earthquake lasts at least 1-2 minutes.

Official warnings

You may get warnings from one or several sources. Respond to the first source. Don’t wait for further messages before you act. Sources for reliable information include:

If someone’s life is in danger, call 111 immediately.


Whiritoa safe evacuation zone

You will need to head to the nearest high ground or as far inland as possible. On this map, the area with the white stripes shows the safe zone for Whiritoa.
Print this information for Whiritoa [PDF, 405 KB] pdf.gif

Tsunami awareness Whiritoa map

Kaiaua safe evacuation zone

You will need to head to the nearest high ground or as far inland as possible. On this map, the area with the white stripes shows the safe zone for Kaiaua. 
Print this information for Kaiaua [PDF, 213 KB] pdf.gif

Tsunami awareness Kaiaua map